What is it like to stay in a clinical unit?
The experience you have while staying in a clinical unit can range from very pleasant to extremely comfortable. Most clinics have spacious, well-equipped facilities that provide volunteers with numerous forms of entertainment. On all studies involving overnight stays (in-house studies), the following can be expected: – Your meals will be provided (though the quality and quantity will depend on the clinic, and you may be on a restricted diet for most of the study). – You\’ll be given a bed. This could be in a private room (don\’t count on it), a room you share with 1-3 other subjects, a ward with beds for up to 24 subjects, or a dormitory-style arrangement with bunk beds. – Entertainment – This at minimum will consist of a common room or lounge area with a television (often including cable, sky or movie channels), and usually a VCR, with a selection of movie videos either rented or stocked. – Reading material – Most clinics provide daily newspapers and have a selection of books and magazines on hand, though it is always a good idea to bring your own reading material.
Many clinic facilities include a pool table, video games, and board games. During the course of the study, whenever you\’re not involved in study procedures you can take advantage of the above, or simply lie in bed and relax or sleep, though there may be times when this is not allowed. – Toiletries – A few clinics will provide subjects with shampoo, toothpaste, etc. but most will not. You will be told if you need to bring your own. – Clothing – A very few clinics will issue hospital scrubs or uniforms to their subjects, but most require you bring enough clothes to last the study. Some clinics have a washer and dryer on the unit, which you may have to pay to use. – Phones – Nearly every clinic will have at least one phone for volunteers to use, but you will need to bring coins or a phone card.